Reality TV Contestant Reportedly Commits Suicide
When reality show contestant Wesley Durden was eliminated from The Next Great Baker, he took his disappointment with good grace. But two months after taping that episode the distraught father of two killed himself. He's the latest in a growing list of reality show contestants to take their own lives.
Sergeant Wesley Durden was a veteran of the famed 82nd Airborne Unit and served two tours of combat duty in Iraq.
The episode in which he is sent home by host Buddy Valastro was broadcast Monday night on TLC. The network posted an In Memoriam messsage at the end the show.
Wesley's wife, Maria, says he was suffering from post traumatic stress disorder after his experiences in Iraq. INSIDE EDITION's Paul Boyd spoke to Maria.
"Really, it broke everyone's heart," said Maria.
Boyd asked, "Some people are suggesting reality TV played a role in your husband's suicide. How do you respond to that?"
"I don't think it played a role at all," said Maria. "And I know he was going through a lot of things and in the last few months it got out of control."
Sadly, he's not the first chef to commit suicide after being kicked off a reality show.
Chef Gordon Ramsey told Joe Cerniglia his Italian restaurant was going to float down the Hudson River on his show Kitchen Nightmares.
Ramsey said to Cerniglia, "Why did you go into business if you haven't a clue how to run a business?"
Joe actually threw himself off the George Washington bridge into the Hudson River last year.
Rachel Brown, a contestant on Hell's Kitchen in 2006, took her own life the following year.
And this past summer Russell Armstrong, whose estranged wife, Taylor is one of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, hanged himself after he complained reality TV had destroyed his life.
But Wesley Durden's wife says she's comforted to have the last months of his life on video.
"My kids can watch that as they grow up," said Maria.